In the beginning of my spiritual journey I have painted Eve numerous time. She was a fascinating subject - First woman and the First to fall! In my many attempts to read Bible I could not pass the ridge of the long list of Adam’s descendants, meaning - I read the story of creation over and over again. Eve was the only woman there I could relate to in so many ways: her risky attempt to gain knowledge and being newly married. I was also toying with popular relativist ideas of Eve’s greatness. I completely misunderstood the simple meaning of the original sin of disobedience by attributing it to a sort of adolescent revolt for independence from parents/God the Father and her natural desire to start a family. As a result I produced a whole series of interesting paintings related to Eve.
She was our prehistoric mother and I was with my first child too. Conceiving and caring a child in my womb was an amazing new experience. I painted her green to honor the C.S. Lewis’ beautiful character in “Perelandra” novel. Fresh as a spring twig, innocently naked and vulnerably joyful in her love for her husband. Her greenness is turning to flesh as she matures through her new experiences of marriage union and motherhood. Like a ripening of an apple the warm undertones cover her chicks.
The mystery of the new life inside of her sparks the light in her eyes. On her slender shoulders she caries the weight of the new world abundant with life and her strong body painted with more earthy hues seems to be filled with the strength of a tree.
This painting was hanging on loan in the Hawkeye College library, when I chose it as the main publicity image for “God is Love” exhibit. I liked this painting so much I had to come up with some good reasoning and here it is: In spite of the grave consequences to the mankind of the original sin, God have not abandoned our patriarchal parents, but came to live among us as a man, taught how to live it well and how do die with purpose and dignity. Having my own adult children taught me a great lesson of God’s Mercy and forgiveness. No matter how great is our fall may be, Our Heavenly Father is suffering with and for us. He is patiently waiting, like every good parent, for the return of his prodigal children. Like Adam and Eve in our joys and sufferings we are never along.
I often pondered why Adam did not stop the conniving snake, when Eve was tempted? The Bible is silent about the exact details and it may lead some to conjecture his failure to protect his beloved woman. We only read that “she also gave the fruit to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it”(Genesis 3:6). 25 years of marriage taught me, that ‘it is better to make mistakes together than to be right along’. Could it be, that Adam remembered God’s commandment of love “what God joined together, no one can separate”, and followed Eve into the death of sin, so that together, strengthened by the love for each other, they would find the Grace of God again!